Written by experienced practitioners, Case Preparation and Opinion Writing offers trainee barristers both thorough grounding in the essential skill of writing opinions and providing practical advice on matters such as evidence and procedure, and the tools and techniques required to effectively identify, analyze and present sound and convincing legal arguments and advice to both clients and the courts in order to win the case.
The Case Preparation chapters provide highly practical guidance on all aspects of preparing a case. The manual charts the logical progression of a barrister's case, from developing an intial understanding of the relevant facts and legal context and undertaking detailed analysis of the key issues and evidence, to finally constructing a sound and persuasive argument to present to the court.
In the Opinion Writing chapters, the manual adopts a systematic approach providing guidance on analyzing the issues of a case, through to deciding what advice should be given, how the opinion should be structured, before finally moving onto writing the opinion to a high professional standard. The fundamental qualities of effective writing - clarity, accuracy, and conciseness - are clearly identified and explained ensuring, that the manual supports the reader in developing the unrivalled level of proficiency in writing required of all practicing barristers.
Dedicated chapters on legal research guide the reader through the plethora of print and electronic sources available and provide invaluable practical guidance on how to conduct successful legal research, while chapters focusing specifically on reading and interpreting cases, and presenting and recording research trails, highlight the process of research undertaken. Worked examples are also contained throughout to highlight legal research in action.
The manual also introduces the trainee barrister to a systematic C.A.P (Context, Analyze, Present) approach to analyzing a client's case, designed to provide an efficient and reliable method for preparing sound answers and convincing arguments to legal problems. Covering both civil and criminal cases, realistic sets of papers are used to demonstrate the C.A.P approach in practice and additional sets of papers are provided to encourage students to practice developing their case preparation skills.
Case Preparation and Opinion Writing is essential reading for all trainee barristers, and is also a useful source of reference for junior practitioners wishing to refresh or refine their opinion writing skills. The manual is supported by a number of online resources, including extra chapters and a suggested answer.
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Allison Wolfgarten is a Barrister and a Senior Lecturer at The City Law School
Nigel Duncan is a Principal Lecturer at The City Law School
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